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Older siblings learn about sharing, life-long love and friendship.

For many, the thought of having a second child can be overwhelming. There may be fears about being disloyal to your first child and unable to love another child in the same way.

Tuesday, November 28th, 2017

Rest assured, a new sibling adds to the growth and development of the whole family. The firstborn learns about sharing, lifelong love and friendship. You cannot be sure about how your firstborn will react, but your attitude and way of handling the situation can influence the development of family bonds.

Depending on your child’s age, start preparing the sibling for the new baby during your pregnancy. Books are an extremely useful medium. The older the child, the earlier you can begin. Talk to the sibling about being separated from you while you are in hospital. Make sure that the temporary caregiver is supportive and caring, and encourage a relationship of trust and familiarity.

Life will never be the same again for the whole family. The constant demands of a young baby and the attention a new baby receives, can be shattering to an older child. Regression is a common reaction. You need to exercise a lot of patience and understanding during this time. Remember, adjusting to a new baby is one of life’s normal growing experiences for all members of the family.

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